New president’s comments do harm to Las Vegas business tourism. Famous sin city needs to restore its image and demands Obama’s apology.
President Obama has been making the headlines in recent months for a number of reasons, most of which have been met with nothing more than praise and adulation. However, Oscar Goodman, the mayor of Las Vegas, has come out to demand an apology from the recently elected American president
because of his comments about the city itself.
In Indiana Obama went on record saying that one should not go to Las Vegas at the cost of taxpayers: "You can"t get corporate jets, you can"t go take a trip to Las Vegas or go down to the Super Bowl on the taxpayer"s dime." This comment was directed at companies receiving a federal bailout yet has, so far, done a lot of harm to Las Vegas’s reputation. This issue has raised serious doubts in the business world about whether corporate events should be held there, especially if the president hints that Las Vegas is just a hedonist paradise full of slot machines and nightlife.
On the face of it, Las Vegas seems the perfect place for corporate events to take place. It has a total of 140.000 hotel rooms available at very low rates and the possibilities for dining and entertainment seem endless. However, the president’s words have almost nullified these advantages.
For example, the Goldman Sachs Group Inc. recently paid a $600.000 cancellation fee to move their event from Las Vegas to San Francisco. It seemed to them better to pay the money than to risk the embarrassment of hosting an event in a gambling haven. Las Vegas has, understandably, responded by demanding an apology from Obama and by launching a six-figure advertising campaign to put its business tourism back on the map. There remains the hope that Obama’s words will not be as serious as some dread.
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